Monday, 23 January 2012

Pink and White Sleeveless Spencer

When I was 12 my mother bought me a summer nightie. I thought it was absolutely beautiful and I just loved the material -white with pink roses. I loved it so much that I still had it, squirreled away in the back of a draw, over 10 years later! Recently I came across it and decided that it was a waste to leave it languishing in a drawer, and that I should try and make something out of it. Buoyed up with the recent partial success of my blue and yellow regency gown, I thought that I could attempt to make another article of Regency clothing. I chose to make a sleeveless spencer, and used the Sense and Sensibility Spencer pattern and lined it with the same material that my white gown is made out of. 

After I finished my blue and yellow gown, Sabine (who has a fabulous blog) recommend completely hand sewing a garment. I decided to take her advice and made the spencer by hand (except for a little cheating when sewing the lining and fashion material together!! :) ) It took quite a while but it was a much less stressful experience then using a machine  - no shouting and hitting the machine!!!  Here is how it turned out. I am quite pleased with it :) (well most of it).

The pink trim was on the nightie so I just removed it and restitched it onto the fabric. 

I am not crazy about the fact that the armholes are quite a bit wider than the actual dress. It looks a bit strange but I think the S&S spencer jacket pattern has wider armholes than the gown pattern. I am not sure if it is historically accurate. If it isn't than I might just add some sleeves.

I am wearing my white gown and petticoat underneath.

Goofy photo of me . :) I seem to be a trifle lopsided!! 


  1. beautiful! i really like the red hem (zigzag). fits you well!

  2. Why thank you kind sister :).

  3. I'm very happy to hear that you enjoyed hand sewing! Yes, it's true it's much more relaxing than sitting behind a machine;)
    Lovely result!!!


  4. It's very pretty!

    And those wide armscyes in the back are actually quite accurate - the back piece of many bodices are even smaller than that. So you're good. ;)

    1. Thank you, that is a relief! I was slightly apprehensive about wearing it to an event as I had never seen any back like it. But now I will enjoy wearing it. :)

  5. What a wonderful way to make good use of such special fabric! It looks really good on you, and I think it's a wonderful way to alter the look of a gown very easily and effectively. Funnily enough, I too have saved a childhood nightie because I loved the fabric so much. You've inspired me to try and use it as you did yours - to make something beautiful and functional! I hope my little project turns out as splendidly as yours did :)